Huntington Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
If you have been hurt on the job, workers’ compensation insurance should be a lifeline to pay your medical bills and lost wages. However, these benefits could be complicated to apply for and denied if done incorrectly.
If you need help filing a claim, or if your case is denied, it could be beneficial to contact a Huntington workers’ compensation lawyer to help you get the money you need while you recover. An experienced personal injury attorney could help you safeguard your financial future through filing a workplace accident claim.
What is the First Step When an Employee is Hurt on the Job?
New York requires most workplaces to offer worker’s comp insurance, in which employees are compensated without needing to prove fault or negligence by their employer. The injury or illness may be caused by an accident, such as a fall from a scaffold, repetitive movements, such as carpal tunnel from typing, or by a toxic environment resulting in diseases such as mesothelioma.
Whatever the cause of the injury, incapacitation does have to occur on the job and arise out of work duties. For example, employees are not eligible for compensation if they are injured commuting to work.
Reporting an Accident or Illness
Injured employees working in New York only have 30 days to report their accident in writing to an employer, or two years to report illness from the time the employee suspects that the disease is work-related. A Form C-3 must then be filled out and mailed to the Workers’ Compensation Board to start the process of collecting a settlement. Within 10 days of receiving notice of an injured or sick employee, an employer needs to report the injury to the Workers’ Compensation Board and the insurance carrier. A Huntington legal professional familiar in workers’ compensation claims can guide an injured worker through this process.
Mandatory Medical Exam
As soon as practicable, a doctor authorized by the Workers’ Compensation Board and approved by the employer must examine the injured employee. The doctor will assess the injuries or illness to determine whether the condition had arisen out of employment and may recommend a suitable treatment to help the employee return to maximum health.
Because the examining doctor will be working with the insurance carrier, this process could be used to limit or deny a proper settlement to an injured employee. If the employer’s insurance carrier rejects a claim, the injured employee could appeal it, and the denial could be reversed. The appeal process is a complicated legal procedure, and a Huntington advisor familiar with insurance claims can help if a claim is denied.
Some reasons why an insurance carrier could try to deny a claim for workers’ compensation are:
- The insurance company denies that the injury occurred in the workplace
- They believe the employee had a preexisting condition
- They believe the employee is overstating the severity of the injury
How do Workers’ Compensation Settlements Work?
An injured worker must decide how they want to receive a settlement, once one is agreed upon by all parties. The employee can take a lump-sum payment for all future benefits, meaning no additional benefits will be paid for the same injury. The employee can also accept payment as full settlement, which restricts any future benefits, or they can have the entire compensation paid in increments over time, similar to receiving a paycheck.
What Types of Benefits an Injured Employee Can Receive?
While workers’ compensation benefits can most likely include coverage of medical treatment and rehabilitation, they could also consist of temporary disability payments in the form of lost wages while the employee is unable to return to work. These lost wage payments could include permanent partial disability for an employee who will not be able to return in full capacity to work.
Permanent total disability payments could be applied if an employee will never be able to return to work. Calculating the percentage of disability is tricky, so it is essential to consult a workers’ compensation lawyer in Huntington to maximize disability benefits.
A Huntington Workers’ Compensation Attorney is Your Advocate
If you have been injured or have contracted a severe illness in the workplace, you should be able to rely on an employer’s insurance carrier to pay you for your treatment, recovery, and disability if the damage is extremely serious. If your claim is denied, you face a possible lifelong financial burden.
A Huntington workers’ compensation lawyer can explain the procedure for filing a benefits claim or appealing a denied claim while advocating for you every step of the way. Call for your free consultation today.